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mainspring

noun

1 mainspring

The most important spring in a mechanical device (especially a clock or watch); as it uncoils it drives the mechanism.

Roget 153: cause, origin, source, principle, element; occasioner, prime mover, primum mobile [Lat.]; vera causa [Lat.]; author etc. (producer) 164; mainspring; ... show more

Roget 615: motive, springs of action, wellsprings of action.    reason, ground, call, principle; by end, by purpose; mainspring, primum mobile [Lat.], keystone; the why and the wherefore; ... show more

Roget 633: machinery, mechanism, engineering.    instrument, organ, tool, implement, utensil, machine, engine, lathe, gin, mill; air engine, ... show more

Dutch: drijfveer, slagpen, slagpin, slagveer




Moby thesaurus: ambition, aspiration, basis, calling, cause, consideration, font, fount, fountain, fountainhead, goal, ground, guiding light, guiding star, headspring, headstream, headwater, ideal, inspiration, intention ... show more.

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